The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 80, July 1976 - April, 1977 Page: 115
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role of the French, as traders, explorers, and interpreters-and suppliers
of firearms to the Indians-is by no means neglected.
While both religious and military elements sought to influence the na-
tives on New Spain's frontiers, often working side by side, the emphasis
here is on the military, for in the final analysis it bore the brunt of the
problem. Nowhere else has this aspect of Spanish Texas and New Mexico
been so comprehensively, and comprehensibly, treated. The work is monu-
John's masterful development of the interrelationship of various regions,
leaders, and campaigns, sheds new light on the entire Spanish effort and
the Indian reaction to it. New heroes-men who played significant sub-
ordinate roles to the more renowned-emerge in her synthesis of archival
material and reliable secondary sources.
New Spain unquestionably had its rogues and misfits in frontier service.
Yet the author describes an astonishing degrees of statemanship, among
both Spaniards and Indians. One cannot help but speculate on the result,
had the Spaniards possessed enough leaders of the caliber of Tomas V6lez
Capuchin and Juan Bautista de Anza to serve in every provincial gover-
nor's post throughout the period.
Storms Brewed in Other Men's Worlds also prompts the thought that
while neither Spaniard, Englishman, nor American has cause to be proud
of his treatment of the Indian, the Spaniard perhaps has the least reason
of all to be ashamed. Just as with the Americans of a later time, the
Spanish attempt at Indian relations often was characterized by cruelty,
avarice, and outright blundering. But it also showed genuine, dedicated
effort to effect lasting and equitable solutions.
While the author's preface expresses a hope that the book will be of
some interest to historian and anthropologist, she declares, "This narrative
is intended for the general reader seeking historical construction of a key
segment of American Indian experience." The "general reader" is an
unpredictable creature, and it seems doubtful that many of his ilk will find
the motivation for perusing this volume in its entirety. The book's greatest
value seems rather to lie in the help it offers to scholars in sorting out the
details of personages and events that previous writers have tended to treat
in fragmented or confused fashion.
The book could have used a less cumbersome title, and the "play-by-
play" of military campaigns and negotiations occasionally becomes tedious.
A shorter book, with some of these details presented in summary, might
have been more widely read, serving the general reader's purpose better.
But on the whole John has done a magnificent job and filled a great
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 80, July 1976 - April, 1977, periodical, 1976/1977; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101204/m1/133/: accessed July 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.